PROGRAM DESIGN CLARITY: We are hungry to know more about what exactly your model consists of. Please succinctly list a) what main activities are you doing with your beneficiaries, b) where you carry out the activities? c) how often? d) for how many hours? e) who delivers the services? and f) any other brief details
We run Passion for Life workshops and getaways for girls in Kathmandu, Lalitpur, Bhaktapur and Kavre districts in Nepal. These are conducted in different ways depending on beneficiaries’ needs – some are 1 hour monthly, others are intensive weeks away, others are “pop up workshops”. The services are delivered by Bec as well as our team of trainers (girls who have been through the program and trained as trainers). The workshops consist of activities to guide them in identifying their strengths, how they can use them to create an income and how to create a road map.
INSPIRATION: What do you consider the most important trends or evidence that inspire you to believe the world is ready to Re-imagine Learning? Please elaborate.
The conversation around learning has changed. The focus has shifted from assessment and outcomes to more of the process, the learning environment, the learners themselves. This change opens a great opportunity for learning to be reimagined, re-engineered. There has been increased interest in the physical classrooms which is a wonderful opportunity to integrate play into learning spaces. Once this happens, other changes can filter through. The dramatic development of technology also allows new conversations for incorporating more play and independent and customised learning. It’s exciting.
LEARNING THROUGH PLAY: What does “learning through play” mean to you and why it is a must-have, instead of a nice to have?
Learning content is no longer sufficient. To succeed in the current world, students need to master skills in learning how to learn. Play provides opportunities to practise creativity, innovation, critical thinking, determination and to set their curiosity free. All critical 21st century skills. Play has built in rewards and motivation as well as opportunities for cross-cultural games and interactions (facilitated by technology). Play enables a culture of learning which will overhaul classrooms and learning environments by changing the perceptions of learning.
SUSTAINABILITY: Please list a quick breakdown of your funding, indicating the percentage that comes from each source.
- Fundraising – events and individual funders in Australia – 50%
- Foundations – COMO Foundation primarily in Singapore – 30%
- NGOs – Partner organisations such as Dream Speakers in Nepal – 20%
MODEL: How does your mission relate to your business model (i.e. Non-profit, for-profit or hybrid)?
The non-profit industry is increasingly uncertain and more time is spent preparing reports to donors than on delivering services to beneficiaries. It also creates a dependency.
The profit industry is focused on commercialising solutions rather than on the quality of people’s lives.
A hybrid model combines creativity and innovation which drive profit industries with a mission based approach. For sustainable change, a hybrid model is crucial.
FUNDING PRIORITIES: If your organization were given $20K in unrestricted funding today, how would you use it? Why?
-Developing more content – based on feedback from our pilot projects and during this award process.
-Training more trainers – to enable them to empower more people
-A formal study – for credibility and feedback to enable us to improve
-The online model – for expansion, scalability and fun
PARTNERSHIPS: Tell us about your partnerships that enhance your approach.
Partnerships are at the heart of Passion for Life:
-with our donors (eg COMO Foundation) who give us access to their experience and other partners are fantastic
-with international organisations with similar missions in different countries enable us to learn from others
-but on the ground partnerships with youth clubs, schools, other organisations are what will give us scale and truly sustainable change. These are our lifeblood and our passion
COLLABORATIONS: Have you considered or initiated partnerships with any of the other Challenge Pacesetters? If so, please share.
Oh yes! We have exchanged ideas with several other Pacesetters and arranged Skype calls with a few to explore ideas. The conversations are flowing and the partnerships will follow. The networking opportunities have been the highlight of this process. We have learned so much and been very inspired.
VISION: If you had unlimited funding, and you could fast forward 15 years to when your program has been able to achieve wild success - what will it have achieved?
What a wonderful question! Wild success for Passion for Life would be an online world where young people can explore their passions, try out careers, brainstorm with others for ideas. The online platform would be available globally in several languages. Then there would be locally driven facilitated face-to-face brainstorming and implementation support in schools, youth groups and other gatherings of young people created and led by local youth.
IMPACT - KEY METRICS: Please list the key data points that you would cite as evidence that you are able to achieve lasting learning outcomes. Please also share one data point for which you most hope to see better results over time
200 girls have been through the off line pilot program in 3 years.
Over 500 girls have been through different iterations of earlier versions of the program.
But we are too early in to be able to measure the outcomes. For me, how many children do it is not so important. We need to measure how many identify their passions and succeed in achieving it, how many make better career study decisions as a result of having a plan and career counselling.
APPROACHES: Given the complexity of play, it is not surprising that there have been numerous research attempts to categorize the different types and approaches! Please indicate which of the following your project focuses on.
Pretence/ Socio-Dramatic Play, Creating a Supportive Socio-Emotional Environment, Adults Participating (Ensuring adults are able to play alongside children), Challenging Play (play that disrupts - where rules are disregarded and levels of imagination are high).
AFFILIATION: Please specify if your organization has any existing affiliations with the LEGO Group.